Small Town Gems to Visit in Your RV
For most people, the big cities are what come to mind when thinking about places to travel. The funny thing though? Some of the very best spots to visit in the entire US are actually the small towns.
The charm, history, and personality of many of this country’s many quaint towns make them simply irresistible. These places are welcoming and often quirky, making them ideal spots to explore, and many people will use small towns as quick weekend getaways or string several of them together for an all-American road trip.
Yes, small towns are some of the best hidden gems in the US. Below are some of our very favorite tiny communities in the country. Pick and choose from this list and you really can’t go wrong.
Best Small Towns in America
Let’s start with some of the more popular small towns out there. In our opinion, these are the best small towns in America, and once you visit them, we think you’ll agree. Not only do all of these towns boast some serious charm, but they also have some great things to do.
Bar Harbor, ME
Top of our list is definitely Bar Harbor, Maine. You have to go pretty far up into Maine to get to Bar Harbor, but it’s totally worth the drive. The downtown area couldn’t be cuter and the seafood eateries up here are to die for. Of course, the fact that the town is also where you’ll find the incredibly beautiful Acadia National Park is also a great reason to check this one out.
Adventurous travelers should consider checking out the super cute town of Moab, Utah. This desert southwest town is located right by Arches National Park. It’s also surrounded by hiking trails for all levels, as well as plenty of opportunities for both rock climbing and off-roading. The town itself features all sorts of wonderful shops and eateries, and often plays host to such community events as roller skating nights, concerts, and more.
St. Augustine, FL
St. Augustine, Florida is an amazing winter destination thanks to its year-round warm temperatures. We love that the town has embraced its history and provides plenty of opportunities to learn about it. You can visit the amazing Castillo De San Marcos to tour a historic fort or wander the historic St. George Street for some unique shopping and dining opportunities. There are plenty of museums to check out (the Pirate and Treasure Museum is fantastic), and you’re also sure to love the picturesque scenery found around every corner.
Are you a fan of history? If so, you’ll like St. Augustine for sure, but you might like Williamsburg, Virginia even more. This town is home to the incredible Colonial Williamsburg living history museum, which is easily one of the best living history museums in the country. Historic Jamestowne and Jamestown Settlement, Yorktown Battlefield, and other great historic sites and museums are nearby as well. To top it all off, downtown Williamsburg is incredibly cute and offers plenty of shopping and dining to keep guests happy.
Want to experience some quintessential New England charm? Stowe, Vermont is just the place! This town is home to all kinds of adorable places to check out and things to see. Smugglers Notch State Park Campground is the perfect place to stay, and you’ll be surrounded by lots of beautiful hiking. Head into town to visit the Vermont Ski and Snowboard Museum as well as the local breweries found there. You’ll also want to keep an eye out for covered bridges!
Yet another great place for history buffs, Gettysburg is another small town that is well worth visiting. Not only does this town feature a historic battelefield, but it’s also where Abraham Lincoln gave his famous Gettysburg Address. You can see the locations where all of these things took place, as well as some fantastic museums about them. Of course, the charming historic downtown area with delicious restaurants and fun shopping is also wonderful.
Cape May, NJ
There are all kinds of amazing small towns in New Jersey. One of our favorites is the beachside town of Cape May. This town has all kinds of yummy seafood places as well as some great souvenir shops. You’ll find plenty of pristine beaches to relax on, and both Cape May Point State Park and the totally free Cape May County Zoo are nearby.
Hidden Gems to Add to Your Road Trip Itinerary
The towns above are small but relatively well known. If you truly want to add some secret spots to your next trip itinerary, you’ll have to dig a little deeper. Below are some of our favorite hidden gems in the US. Add these to your lineup to discover some little known places that you’re sure to love!
We absolutely love Medora, North Dakota. This is the town located right outside of the fabulous Theodore Roosevelt National Park and is the perfect place to do some shopping and dining during your visit to the park. The town gives you the perfect taste of small town America while also giving you plenty to do. We especially recommend seeing the Medora Musical and enjoying the delicious food served at each performance.
Another of our favorite tiny towns is Guthrie, Oklahoma. This town has been the setting of a surprising number of movies, and once you visit, you’ll understand why. The place feels like it was taken straight from the past and plopped into the 21st century. Here you’ll find all kinds of fantastic antique shops, some great local eateries, and a fantastic community theater that puts on some of the best shows in the region.
De Smet, SD
Have you ever read the Little House books? Most of us have, and many of us have wished we could join Laura Ingalls Wilder on her adventures. When you visit the town of De Smet, South Dakota, you can do just that at the Ingalls Homestead. Here, you can park your RV onsite and head right down the hill to enjoy covered wagon rides, visiting a historic church and schoolhouse, and participating in the household chores pioneers would have had to do.
This is an immersive experience that we cannot recommend enough, especially if you have young Little House fans in tow.
Aurora, Nebraska is unique because it actually has a totally free RV campground! (For up to four nights, anyway.) The sites in the campground feature water and electric hookups and there is a dump station onsite. Very near the campground—within short walking distance—you’ll find the city-run water park that is tons of fun during the summer, and you can walk just a little further down the street for delicious coffee and food. The town is also home to the Edgerton Explorit Center and the Plainsman Museum.
Flagler Beach, FL
Looking for a teeny tiny beach town to vacation in? Look no further than Flagler Beach, Florida. This cute little town is the perfect place to escape the hustle and bustle of the big city. The beach is lovely and offers plenty of sand to play in, as well as nice waves for surfing. There are lots of great restaurants in town, and the local ice cream parlor is absolutely adorable and the perfect place for an after-beach snack.
Don’t think any of these spots will be your cup of tea? That’s okay, there are tons of other small towns in this beautiful country of ours. Why not do an internet search for “small towns near me” to see what other amazing places you can discover?
Worried about where you’ll stay when visiting a small town? Well, when traveling via RV, you can easily stay in even the smallest towns in complete comfort. That’s why we recommend choosing the perfect rental RV for your next trip to Small Town, USA.